Beignets & Sassaquois
by Jack B. Bedell
I want to show my daughter
how much her grandmother
loved making beignet dough.
Such simple work:
metal bowl, warm water,
yeast and sugar,
eggs, milk, and salt.
A quick whisk, and cups
of sifted flour.
My daughter’s hands,
shaped so much like Mother’s,
would be perfect for kneading,
for making smooth this dough
as sticky as any memory.
He leaves his mark high up
on all the trees along the trail,
and with it a smell so thick
black bears spin around three times
before heading toward open space—
no shape on the horizon, only a knock
or yawp to rattle herons from their nests,
his swamp no place for discovery,
just mist and mud, enough water
for trot lines and quick passage home.
Jack B. Bedell is Professor of English and coordinator of Creative Writing at Southeastern Louisiana University, where he also edits Louisiana Literature and directs the Louisiana Literature Press. His latest collections are Elliptic (Yellow Flag Press, 2016), Revenant (Blue Horse Press, 2016) and Bone-Hollow, True: New & Selected Poems(Texas Review Press, 2013). He has been appointed by Gov. John Bel Edwards to serve as Louisiana Poet Laureate from 2017-2019. Read his previous poem in Deep South here.